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An exploration of trainee educational psychologists' experience of attending a group relations conference using Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis

Bartle, Dale (2016) An exploration of trainee educational psychologists' experience of attending a group relations conference using Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis. Other thesis, University of Essex & Tavistock and Portman NHS Trust.

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Abstract

Aim: The aim of this research has been to explore trainee educational psychologists’ experience of attending a group relations conference and their perception of any influence on their behaviour. Design: Four participants were recruited through purposive sampling and interviewed on two occasions. Interview data was analysed using interpretive phenomenological analysis. Findings: Themes that emerged through analysis indicated that participants’ described their experience, of attending a group relations conference, as involving chaos, confusion, conflict and coping. Participants also indicated that they gained an enhanced awareness of behaviours within groups and engaged in significant levels of self-reflection, exploring concepts of identity and the self in role. These findings were related to the literature and it is proposed that psychosocial theory can help in offering a coherent understanding of the intersubjectivity influencing the interrelated internal and external experiences. The influence of anxiety, defences and splitting in particular are discussed. Limitations of the research are considered. Impact: It is argued that group relations conferences can support the development of knowledge and understanding of groups, relationships and interpersonal skills, which are included in the requirements of professional training in educational psychology. More broadly, it is argued that attending a group relations conference can support self-reflection and exploring issues of identity and the self in role. It is suggested that this learning can support trainees in understanding the complex contexts in which they work. It is also suggested that this approach to experiential learning may be of interest to more experienced professionals and to trainees and practitioners from a range of professions. This research may also be of interest to those designing and delivering group relations conferences in terms of theory and practice. A range of possible future directions for research are considered.

Item Type: Thesis (Other)
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Divisions: Faculty of Science and Health > Psychology, Department of
Depositing User: Dale Bartle
Date Deposited: 05 Jun 2016 21:39
Last Modified: 05 Jun 2016 21:40
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/16838

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